New Zealand: Widespread opposition to asset sales

September 30, 2013

The New Zealand government is rushing through the sale of Meridian Energy for NZ$1 billion less than the $3.1 billion needed to reach its goal of raising at least $5 billion from asset sales.

It is moving ahead wit the sale widespread public opposition and criticism ranging from opposition parties to investment bankers.

Meridian Energy Limited, a state-owned electricity generator and retailer, is expected to divest 49% of its shares as part of a government privatisation program.

A recent petition gathered over 327,000 valid signatures in opposition to the planned asset sales and called for a citizens-initiated referendum.

Green Party Co-leader Dr Russel Norman said: “John Key is arrogantly rushing the Meridian sale when he should be waiting for Kiwis to have their say in the asset sales referendum.”

Labour Party state-owned enterprises spokesperson Clayton Cosgrove said: “The asset sales programme is pure ideology and is seriously flawed economically.”

You need Green Left, and we need you!

Green Left is funded by contributions from readers and supporters. Help us reach our funding target.

Make a One-off Donation or choose from one of our Monthly Donation options.

Become a supporter to get the digital edition for $5 per month or the print edition for $10 per month. One-time payment options are available.

You can also call 1800 634 206 to make a donation or to become a supporter. Thank you.